There are times in our lives that just seem busier than others. For my family, one of the busiest times is happening right now. The end of the school year, the beginning of summer and the start of weekly tournaments for all three of my children. It’s a very fun time of the year, but life in our household does get hectic. I am getting closer to mastering the art of juggling family, career, activities, and chores, but I still cannot seem to fit in the “me time” I so much desire.
Women especially are guilty of sacrificing their free time to take care of others. And as much as we know how important it is for de-stressing our minds and re-gaining our sanity, finding some much needed “me time” just doesn’t seem to fit in our schedules. We, as women, have to take a stand and realize that the busier our lives get, the more important it is to make sure we get some personal time away from the daily tasks that fill up our lives.
Just recently I temporarily moved my lifecycle from the basement to my bedroom, thinking that if I didn’t have to walk down two flights of stairs to the basement to exercise, I would use the lifecycle more. Turns out I chose resting on the bed and watching tv to de-stress over the lifecycle every time in the past two weeks. I would look over and stare at the bike, sometimes even attempting to get on the bike, but just didn’t feel like I had the energy to use it. I finally realized I was approaching my personal time all wrong.
When our energy is low and our time is limited, adding a few minutes of personal time here and there throughout the week has made me realize that it IS possible to juggle it all – home, career, and personal time. I just have to train my mind to understand how important personal time is for my health and incorporate this precious time into my schedule where it benefits me.
Here are some things that you might want to try to get a jump start on your own “me time:”
Learn to Meditate. Meditation does wonders for the mind, body and soul. I started meditating in the morning before my busy day starts and it has helped me regain the strength and energy I need for the day. Just ten minutes of stillness can make all the difference.
Pat Yourself on the Back. Don’t wait for anyone to tell you what a great job you are doing, take the initiative and pat yourself on the back! You know how hard you work! You know your multi-tasking skills are working and working well! Tell yourself what a wonderful job you are doing every day! Positive self-speech works wonders on your mood. Don’t dwell on the negative, tell yourself that you look good and that you are doing one heck of a job managing everything that comes your way!
Get a Good Sleep. We have all heard this before but getting a good amount of sleep is extremely beneficial for our bodies and our health. Getting a good night’s sleep is essential when it comes to doing our best and lessening stress. When we are sleep deprived, we are cranky. When we feel rested, we are ready to start the day.
Take a Five Minute Break Every Hour. I have yet to meet a human being that is focused at all times. No matter how efficient you work, distractions happen, minds wander, or we end up answering emails or text messages. A great way to regain focus is to change your scenery for a few minutes. Get up from your chair, walk outside and take a 5-minute break. Do some quick stretching exercises and deep breathing to keep your blood circulating and the oxygen flowing. Taking a five minute break also gives your brain a chance to relax and process information, which is essential for your well-being.
Delegate and Outsource. Delegate as much as you can to lighten your load. Outsource where needed if you can budget for it, such as house cleaning, lawn maintenance, or even laundry. Try not to do everything yourself.
Don’t be afraid to Cry. Clean those tear ducts out every once in a while and cry! If you feel overwhelmed, afraid, frustrated, or angry enough to cry, then let it all out! You will feel much better.
Make a Plan and Honor Your Limits. Jot down a “to do” list and from that list, make a plan of how you are going to complete each task. Be reasonable and don’t overwhelm yourself each day. Be sure to schedule the “not so fun” tasks first to get them out of the way. Honor your plan by setting limits and sticking with them.
Have support and be supportive. That’s what friends and family are for. We all need each other to complain to, cry to, and laugh with. Life is worth living when you feel love, happiness and support.
Don’t Forget Your Veggies. Healthy fruits, grains, and vegetables are considered healthy for a reason. They are important for our overall well-being. If you have not started yet, incorporate them into your diet. Homemade smoothies filled with fruits, yogurt and nuts are one of the easiest ways to make sure my family gets the proper nutrients their bodies need each day.